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Case: 5:08-cr-00135-KKC Doc #: 1 Filed: 06/12/08 Page: 1 of 14 - Page ID#: 1

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UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT


EASTERN DISTRICT OF KENTUCKY


CENTRAL DIVISION


LEXINGTON


UNITED STATES OF AMERICA


v.


JOHN MCQUEEN, CLARENCE MCCOY,


SCOTT TYREE, ANTHONY ESTEP,


KRISTINE LAFOE


INDICTMENT

18:241 - Conspiracy to deprive rights under color of Law - 1 Count
18:242 - Deprivation of rights under color oflaw - 3 Counts
18: 1519 - Falsifying records with intent to obstruct investigation - 2 Counts
18:1512(b)(3) - Tampering with witness - 2 Counts
18:2 - Aiding and abetting - 2 Counts

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Case: 5:08-cr-00135-KKC Doc #: 1 Filed: 06/12/08 Page: 2 of 14 - Page ID#: 2

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT

EASTERN DISTRICT OF KENTUCKY


CENTRAL DIVISION


LEXINGTON


UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

V.

JOHN MCQUEEN,
CLARENCE MCCOY,
SCOTT TYREE,
ANTHONY ESTEP and
KRISTINE LAFOE

*
THE GRAND JURY CHARGES:

*

*

*

*

*

At all times relevant to this Indictment:

INTRODUCTION

1. The Lexington Division of Community Corrections, 600 Old Frankfort Circle,

Lexington, Kentucky, commonly referred to as the Lexington-Fayette County Detention

Center [LFCDC] was a jail in Fayette County, Kentucky, responsible for the custody,

control, care, and safety of "pre-trial detainees"; that is, people who have been detained

following arrest but prior to any finding of guilt at trial.

2. The Intake Unit at the LFCDC, which is the area of the LFCDC where

detainees are processed and held temporarily prior to being lodged in the Custody Unit or

Case: 5:08-cr-00135-KKC Doc #: 1 Filed: 06/12/08 Page: 3 of 14 - Page ID#: 3

being released on bond, was staffed twenty-four hours a day by deputy jailers assigned to

one of three eight-hour shifts.

3. The third shift in the LFCDC Intake Unit ran from 12 a.m. until 8 a.m.

4. Defendant John McQueen, a Sergeant assigned to the third shift in the Intake

Unit at the LFCDC, had authority over other deputy jailers on his shift and was

responsible for the custody, care, and safety of pre-trial detainees at the LFCDC.

5. Defendant Anthony Estep, a Sergeant assigned to the third shift in the Intake

Unit at the LFCDC, had authority over other deputy jailers on his shift and was

responsible for the custody, care, and safety of pre-trial detainees at the FCUDC.

6. Defendant Kristine Lafoe, a Lieutenant and Shift Supervisor assigned to the

third shift in the Intake Unit at the LFCDC, had authority over all officers on her shift and

was responsible for the custody, care, and safety of pre-trial detainees at the LFCDC.

7. Defendants Clarence McCoy and Scott Tyree, employed as deputy jailers at

the LFCDC, were assigned to work the third shift in the Intake Unit, and were responsible

for the custody, care, and safety of pre-trial detainees at the LFCDC.

7. L.E., S.H., B.M. B.P.B, J.B., and B.P. were pre-trial detainees at the LFCDC.

COUNT 1

[18 U.S.C. § 241]

From on or about January 1,2006 until on or about October 1,2006, in Fayette

County, in the Eastern District of Kentucky,

JOHN MCQUEEN,

CLARENCE MCCOY,


SCOTT TYREE,


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Case: 5:08-cr-00135-KKC Doc #: 1 Filed: 06/12/08 Page: 4 of 14 - Page ID#: 4

ANTHONY ESTEP,


and KRISTINE LAFOE


while acting under color of law as deputy jailers at the LFCDC, willfully combined,

conspired and agreed with one another,and with other persons known and unknown to

the grand jury, to injure, oppress, threaten and intimidate pre-trial detainees housed at the

LFCDC in the free exercise and enjoyment of a right and privilege secured to them by the

Constitution of the United States; namely, the right not to be deprived of liberty without

the due process of law while in official custody, which includes the right not to be

subjected to excessive force by officers.

Plan and Purpose of the Conspiracy

It was the plan and purpose of the conspiracy that officers working the third shift

in the Intake Area at the LFCDC would assault, injure, inflict pain upon, and otherwise

physically punish restrained or compliant pre-trial detainees at the LFCDC.

It was further part of the plan and purpose of the conspiracy that third shift Intake

officers at the LFCDC would falsely justify uses of force against detainees by writing

false and misleading incident reports in which they would falsely state that the detainee

had attacked or threatened officers, thereby provoking the uses of force.

It was further part of the plan and purpose of the conspiracy that third shift Intake

officers at the LFCDC created "code" language to describe uses of force that made the

incidents sound innocuous and justifiable rather than violent and unjustified.

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It was further part of the plan and purpose of the conspiracy that third shift Intake

supervisors at the LFCDC would review incident reports to ensure that officers were

employing the "code" language.

It was further part of the plan and purpose of the conspiracy that third shift Intake

supervisors at the LFCDC would sometimes participate in, watch, and/or refuse to

intervene in, unjustified uses of force against detainees, thereby perpetuating an

atmosphere at the LFCDC in which unlawful uses of force against detainees were allowed

to continue indefinitely and with impunity.

Overt Acts

In furtherance of the conspiracy, and to effect the objects thereof, the defendants

and their co-conspirators committed the following overt acts, among others, at the

LFCDC:

(a) On or about April 29, 2006, defendant McQueen repeatedly assaulted pre-trial

detainee L.E. by slamming him to the floor, slamming his head into the Intake triage

counter, twisting and bending his wrists, placing his arms in painful "stress positions,"

spraying him directly in the face with chemical spray, and placing weight on L.E. in a

manner that restricted his ability to breathe, all at a time when L.E. was not resisting or

posing a threat to any officer;

(b) On or about April 29, 2006, defendant Estep and persons known to the grand

jury watched and failed to intervene as defendant McQueen assaulted L.E.;

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(c) On or about April 29, 2006, defendant McQueen and persons known to the

grand jury wrote false official reports in which they created a false justification for the

assault on L.E.;

(d) On or about April 29, 2006, in an effort to conceal the assault on L.E.,

defendant Estep and persons known to the grand jury brought false disciplinary charges

against detainee J.B., who had attempted to use his cell phone to notify persons outside

the LFCDC that L.E. was being assaulted;

(e) On or about May 19,2006, defendants McCoy and Tyree, assaulted detainee

B.P.B. by slamming him face-first into the Intake triage counter at a time when B.P.B.

was not resisting or posing a threat to any officer;

(t) On or about May 19,2006, defendant Lafoe and persons known to the grand

jury watched and failed to intervene as McCoy and Tyree assaulted B.P.B..

(g) On or about May 19,2006, defendant McCoy and persons known to the grand

jury wrote false official reports in which they created a false justification for the assault

on B.P.B.;

(h) On or about June 10,2006, defendant McCoy assaulted detainee B.P. by

pushing him against a wall and slamming him to the ground at a time when B.P. was not

resisting or posing a threat to any officer:

(i) On or about June 10, 2006, persons known to the grand jury watched and failed

to intervene as defendant McCoy assaulted B.P.;

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U) On or about June 10, 2006, defendant McCoy and persons known to the grand

jury wrote false official reports in which they created a false justification for the assault

on B.P.;

(k) On or about June 17,2006, defendant McQueen repeatedly slammed detainee

S.H.'s head into the triage counter in the Intake Area at a time when S.H. was handcuffed

and not resisting or posing a threat to any officer;

(1) On or about June 17,2006, defendants Estep and Tyree and persons known to

the grand jury watched and failed to intervene as defendant McQueen assaulted S.H.;

(m) On or about June 17, 2006, defendant McQueen instructed defendant Estep

and persons known to the grand jury not to write required incidents reports about

McQueen's assault of S.H.;

(n) On or about September 13,2006, defendants McCoy and Tyree planned to

assault detainee B.M. in order to retaliate against B.M. for taking a sack lunch out of the

intake area.

(0) On or about September 13,2006, before assaulting BM, defendants McCoy

and Tyree agreed that they would falsely claim that B.M. turned on McCoy in an

aggressive manner and lunged at McCoy in order to justify using physical force on B.M.

(P) On or about September 13,2006, defendants McCoy and Tyree escorted B.M.

past the Intake property counter and into the property room, where they assaulted him at a

time when B.M. was not resisting and not posing a threat to any officer;

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(q) On or about September 13,2006, defendants McCoy and Tyree, along with

persons known to the grand jury, wrote false official reports containing the false

justification they had agreed to before the assault ofB.M.; in their reports, both McCoy

and Tyree falsely wrote that B.M. instigated the incident by "turning on" them in "an

aggressive manner," thereby justifying the use of physical force.

(r) On several occasions between on or about January 1,2006 and on or about

October 1, 2006, defendant Lafoe watched officers using unjustified force against

detainees and failed to intervene;

(s) On several occasions between on or about January 1,2006 and on or about

October 1, 2006, defendant Lafoe watched officers using force against detainees and

failed to write incident reports required by LFCDC policy;

(t) Between on or about January 1,2006 and on or about October 1, 2006,

defendant Lafoe instructed officers known to the grand jury that if they were going to use

unjustified physical force on detainees, they should do so outside the view of any fixed or

handheld video cameras; and

(u) Between on or about January 1,2006 and on or about October 1,2006,

defendant Lafoe reviewed incident reports written by officers known to the grand jury

and instructed them to change their reports to include "code" language that would make

unjustified uses of force appear to be justified.

All in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 241.


COUNT 2


[18 U.S.C. § 242]


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Case: 5:08-cr-00135-KKC Doc #: 1 Filed: 06/12/08 Page: 9 of 14 - Page ID#: 9

On or about April 29, 2006, in Fayette County, in the Eastern District of Kentucky,

JOHN MCQUEEN

while acting under color of law, did physically assault L.E., a pre-trial detainee at the

LFCDC, and did thereby willfully deprive L.E. of a right protected and secured by the

Constitution and laws of the United States; that is the right not to be deprived of liberty

without the due process of law, which includes the right not to be subjected to excessive

force by officers. This offense resulted in bodily injury to L.E.

All in violation 18 U.S.C. § 242.

COUNT 3

[18 U.S.C. § 1519]

On or about April 29, 2006, in Fayette County, in the Eastern District of Kentucky,

JOHN MCQUEEN

while acting in relation to and in contemplation of a matter within the jurisdiction of an

agency of the United States, knowingly falsified a document, specifically an official

report concerning the use of physical force upon pre-trial detainee L.E., with the intent to

impede, obstruct, and influence the investigation and proper administration of that matter.

All in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1519.

COUNT 4

[18 U.S.C. § 1512(b)(3)]

On or about April 29, 2006, in Fayette County, in the Eastern District of Kentucky,

ANTHONY ESTEP

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Case: 5:08-cr-00135-KKC Doc #: 1 Filed: 06/12/08 Page: 10 of 14 - Page ID#: 10

knowingly intimidated, threatened, and corruptly persuaded persons known to the grand

jury, with intent to hinder, delay and prevent the communication, to a federal law

enforcement officer and judge, of information relating to the commission and possible

commission of a federal offense; that is,

Defendant ESTEP ordered officers known to the grand jury, who had witnessed

the unjustified assault on L.E., to conceal the assault by filing false charges against pre­

trial detainee J.B. for having used a cellular telephone to report the assault to persons

outside the LFCDC, all in violation of 18 U.S.C. §§ 1512(b)(3).

COUNT 5

[18 U.S.C. § 242]

On or about June 17,2006, in Fayette County, in the Eastern District of Kentucky,

JOHN MCQUEEN

while acting under color of law, did physically assault S.H., a pre-trial detainee at the

LFCDC, and did thereby willfully deprive S.H. of a right protected and secured by the

Constitution and laws of the United States; that is, the right not to be deprived of liberty

without the due process of law, which includes the right not to be subjected to excessive

force by officers. This offense resulted in bodily injury to S.H.

All in violation 18 U.S.C. § 242.

COUNT 6

[18 U.S.C. § 1512(b)(3)]

On or about June 17,2006, in Fayette County, in the Eastern District of Kentucky,

JOHN MCQUEEN

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knowingly intimidated, threatened, and corruptly persuaded persons known to the grand

jury, with intent to hinder, delay and prevent the communication, to a federal law

enforcement officer and judge, of information relating to the commission and possible

commission of a federal offense; that is,

Defendant MCQUEEN ordered officers known to the grand jury, who had

witnessed his unjustified assault on S.H., not to write required official reports about the

incident.

All in violation of 18 U.S.C. §§ 1512(b)(3).

COUNT 7

[18 U.S.C. §§ 242 and 2]

On or about September 13,2006, in Fayette County, in the Eastern District of

Kentucky,

CLARENCE MCCOY and

SCOTT TYREE

while aiding and abetting one another and while acting under color of law, did physically

assault B.M., a pre-trial detainee at the LFCDC, and did thereby willfully deprive B.M. of

a right, protected and secured by the Constitution and laws of the United States; that is,

the right not to be deprived of liberty without the due process of law, which includes the

right not to be subjected to excessive force by officers. This offense resulted in bodily

injury to B.M.

All in violation 18 U.S.C. §§ 242 and 2.


COUNT 8


[18 U.S.C. §§ 1519 and 2]


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On or about September 13,2006, in Fayette County, in the Eastern District of

Kentucky,

CLARENCE MCCOY and

SCOTT TYREE

while aiding and abetting one another, and while acting in relation to and in

contemplation of a matter within the jurisdiction of an agency of the United States,

knowingly falsified documents, specifically official reports concerning the use of physical

force upon pre-trial detainee B.M., with the intent to impede, obstruct, and influence the

investigation and proper administration of that matter.

All in violation of 18 U.S.C. §§ 1519 and 2.

A TRUE BILL

GRACE CHlmG BECKER
ACTING ASSISTANT ATTORNEY GENERAL
CIVIL RIGHTS DIVISION
DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE

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Case: 5:08-cr-00135-KKC Doc #: 1 Filed: 06/12/08 Page: 13 of 14 - Page ID#: 13

BY:


~~~


CHRISTINE DUNN
KRISTY PARKER
TRIAL ATTORNEYS
CRINIINAL SECTION
CIVIL RIGHTS DIVISION
DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE

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Case: 5:08-cr-00135-KKC Doc #: 1 Filed: 06/12/08 Page: 14 of 14 - Page ID#: 14

PENALTIES

COUNT 1:


Not more than 10 years imprisonment, $250,000 fine, and not
more than 3 years supervised release;

COUNTS 2, 5, and 7:


Not more than 10 years imprisonment, $250,000 fine and not
more than 3 years supervised release;

COUNTS 3 and 8:


Not more than 20 years imprisonment, $250,000 fine and not
more than 5 years supervised release;

COUNTS 4 and 6:


Not more than 20 years imprisonment, $250,000 fine and not
more than 5 years supervised release.


PLUS:


Mandatory special assessment of#100 per felony count.


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